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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short Scripts  ›   Moderators: bert
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Posted: April 2nd, 2015, 6:30pm Report to Moderator

So, what are you writing?

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Platinum Phantom #1 by Darren J Seeley - Short, Sci Fi, Fantasy - A criminal mastermind opens a dimensional portal which swaps school children with mannequins. It's up to the kid left behind and a superhero to solve the case and save the day. 6 pages - pdf, format

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Posted: April 2nd, 2015, 9:13pm Report to Moderator
January Project Group

I got a rock.

Upstate NY
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Hi. You know, I wanted to like this. I thought the premise was pretty cool and all. But it kinda lost me a bit. Your opening actions read a little awkward, kinda choppy. I had no trouble following, but I feel they can be tightened up. Once you got to the dialogue it got better.

I guess my main issue was the story itself. Maybe I'm missing something. Is the boy Psychobrain? I think so, but I'm not quite sure. If he is why would he wanna become the PP's sidekick? I tried to visualize the PP as speaking in a husky, super hero-like voice but something was missing.

Perhaps this could be lengthened? As is it just kinda leaves you hanging without much explanation with the comic book and all. I don't mean to come off as overly critical, but this didn't leave me feeling satisfied. No resolution here. Or maybe that was your intention?


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Posted: April 2nd, 2015, 10:13pm Report to Moderator

The Great Southern Land
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Darren, how's it going?
I notice this is #1 so I take it this is a continuing story?

The opening to this is terrific even if at times I wasn't sure what exactly I was meant to be looking at. I loved the opening with the mannequins and the 16mm film running and the obvious audio of the kids voices over the top.

This line:
a group of unseen, but heard
audience of pre-teen kids.

I get what you're going for (above) but I think you need to write 'a noisy classroom of boys and girls' or something to that effect, or just have an audio like I said of kid's voices - then pull back to reveal these kids are mannequins. There's a nice 'Twilight Zone' kinda feel to this and I really like it.

I think the Alex mannequin should perhaps be capped - he is a character after all.

And, I pictured Joe as quite a bit younger than his thirteen years. I'd personally make him younger and give him a younger name - even if it's Joey. Joe, sounds like an older character's name to me.

Are you planning on 'showing' the actual portal in another ep. - there's a bit of 'telling' going on in this ep. and we don't even get a glimpse of Psychobrain do we?

I also think you need INSERTS for the actual comic book segments.

When Joe says he didn't do anything evil it makes me think he might be the Psychobrain as Steve said, or at least caused the mannequin outbreak?

There's a great vibe to this with some touches of humour and it's a solid set up with potential for great visuals, but I need a bit more clarity, some meat on the bones, and a conclusion... or at least a cliffhanger for the next part.  

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Posted: April 2nd, 2015, 11:27pm Report to Moderator
January Project Group

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Yeah this was the short script I mentioned the other day in Dustin's thread. It's not a new short, just "new" on SS. It had previously appeared on Talentville (inactive at the moment) and originated on DVX User forums a few years ago.

#1 is for Issue #1, but I never thought it would be a continuing story. There isn't a Phantom Issue #2 just yet, let's put it that way. But when I was writing Dustin about it and emailed him a copy, after thinking about it, I subbed it to the shorts section of SS as well. Some folks that haven't read it might want to, and if Dustin passes, having the thing sit around in limbo doesn't help anyone. The cliffhanger -what happens next?- is intentional. The short was to have a slight Twilight Zone feel to it.

Quoted Text
Is the boy Psychobrain?...If he is why would he wanna become the PP's sidekick?

He is. But he thinks it would be cooler if he worked alongside Platinum Phantom. He wanted to get the hero's attention in a non-violent/confrontational way.

Thanks for reading, and the feedback

"I know you want to work for Mo Fuzz. And Mo Fuzz wants you to. But first, I'm going to need to you do something for me... on spec." - Mo Fuzz, Tapeheads, 1988
my scripts on ss :
The Art!
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Posted: April 19th, 2015, 6:46am Report to Moderator
Old Timer

--> Over There
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“The faces of the mannequin children”

- It’s funny, at first I thought this was an effective description of their expressionless faces...

“Joe jolts up from his seat, gazes over the
plastic, expressionless faces of his classmates”

“she is a splitting image of a
department store mannequin.”

- Then I realized it was for real..or fake as the case may be

“closer to the Alex mannequin”

- A small thing but maybe capitalize “Alex” as it’s our first time meeting him. He’s introduced here as if we should know him already.

I’m liking Joe’s “fu?k you” attitude now that everyone has become mannequins. I’m presuming he’s been bullied or shunned by his peers so it’s funny to see him relishing this experience. His antics with the gum on the Alex mannequin was particularly satisfying in an unashamedly, vindictive way.

That document opens a dimensional
portal between two dimensions.

- I wonder could you just call it a “portal’ and drop dimensional? It feels redundant when you go to specify “between two dimensions”

Think I have enough.

“Plops in the coins, makes a selection.”

- I got a chuckle out of this naïve diversion from Joe. He’s just a kid after all who’s thirsty.

If it was the end of the world,
wouldn’t you just want to have a
root beer?

- Ha, fair point.

I was digging this up until the last page when, to quote Platinum Phantom…

You lost me kid.

Or more accurately...”You sort of lost me kid”...It seems that Joe thinks he has gone into Platinum Phantom’s world not the other way around on the basis that he is the only one inexplicably unaffected by Psychobrain’s dummy army. I mean, that’s a hell of an assumption to make.

I know the comic shows that both dimensions are identical, seemingly carbon copies of one another but how is Joe so sure that Platinum Phantom hasn’t met Psychobrain yet either? How does Platinum Phantom know about Psychobrain then? How comes Platinum Phantom didn’t know he hadn’t left his own world? If we are in Platinum Phantom’s world wouldn’t there be more of a chance he would/will have encountered Psychobrain already?

Plus, how did Joe understand all this? He comes to these conclusions without even looking at the comic since page 2. Are you suggesting that he knew what was going on from this point onwards because the comic was depicting his experiences as they happened?

Yeah, I know, I’m probably taking all of this way too seriously. It’s just I was a little confused by all these reveals and assumptions loaded on at the end that I had to process and question them.

So while I essentially got what was going on since Joe literally talks us through it, I think my problem in those last pages and the reason why it was hard to go along with the kid’s sudden revelations primarily lies in the fact that we never get a glimpse of the comic book ourselves when he shows it to Platinum Phantom, as this appears to be where the answers lie.

All we get are reactionary shots as Platinum Phantom reads it and realizes what has happened. Seems a missed opportunity not to show the comic book reflecting what is actually going on; the comic showing Phantom Platinum reading the comic, showing Platinum Phantom reading the comic, etc.

Reading back over the script, perhaps I should’ve copped that Joe was in the comic book world rather than the other way around since the comic featured Joe and his actions as they concurred. Maybe I was thrown by the delay in which this is revealed. As I said above, it appears Joe must’ve known what was really going on from that moment in page 2 when he sees himself in the comic but decided to string Platinum Phantom along for a page or two just for kicks .

Anyway, I still enjoyed the imagination going on here, some nice touches of humour too.


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Posted: April 21st, 2015, 3:58am Report to Moderator

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Hi Darren. Thanks for sharing.

What I liked most about your effort was its humility and old fashioned flare. It has a naivete --  a refreshing departure from the typical superhero construction. Well judged. I must confess, the internal logic of the last couple pages lost me, but then I'm often lost by logic.

The descriptions could be more incisive. For example,

a group of unseen, but heard audience of pre-teen kids

Could easily be done with an AUDIO as LC points out. You say an unseen group of X and I SEE a group of X; unseen but heard levies an interpretation tax on the reader, inherently uncinematic.

she is a splitting image of a department store mannequin

But isn't she an actual mannequin?

he swats the dummy in the shoulder with his comic book.

                                 Flies are on you! Hornets!

Assuming he swats whilst shouting about flies, a wryly should be used. As it is, initially the action and dialogue are seperate events -- a reader tax.

                                      PLATINUM PHANTOM
                                         Wicked... Who's this?

Thumbs to Alex.

I would think here too. Thumbs to Alex works better as a wryly.

Overall a little descriptive tune-up would do wonders. So keep writing. I enjoyed my time in your world. Thanks pal.
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